Did We Burn The Bridge?

By Nisar Siddiqui, Midwest FOA Vice President

The saying “Don’t burn bridges” comes from the idea that if we use a bridge to cross a river and then burn it, we can’t get back over the river if we need to do so in the future.

Recently, we all were feeling overwhelmed, underappreciated and we were almost about to burn the bridge with our partner. After taking a deep breath, putting our thoughts together, we were able to collaborate a plan of action with a clear conscience between the two parties (National Coalition and SEI).

I believe that not only the National Coalition, but all franchisees across the nation want a healthy relationship with SEI so we can work as a team towards the common goal of success. The vision for franchisees involves a stronger financial base in our stores and working in an environment where there is open communication between both parties. Above all, we would like SEI to understand and appreciate that our stores are our bread and butter, and our hard-earned investment to provide a decent living for our families.

In this day in age of new competition—for example, Amazon home delivery and it’s unmanned AmazonGo convenience store—we are surrounded by a growing number of retailers looking to take business away from us. Our business is not what it used to be, as it is constantly evolving and we must as business owners change, too. With lower customer counts due to people ordering online, minimum wage increases, profit margin decreases, and other factors affecting our bottom lines, we need a better understanding on how all these effects are transpired to the franchisee.

When both parties create an open environment of communication, it will only lead to greater work satisfaction, reduced stress, and create loyalty and mutual respect throughout our system. I urge both parties to build the bridge and not to burn it.